The semester is winding down, and while I still have summer work at my other job, my schedule opens up considerably once I stop teaching. However, my income also drops considerably over the summer. I've been putting a little something into savings each week to put towards my trips, and I plan to do a fair bit of travelling, and hope to keep it as thrifty as possible -- here are some of my ideas:
Philadelphia is someplace I've always wanted to go -- and thought it would be fun to see if I could limit my museums to those that have free admission. I'm also planning to stay at the home of a fellow Servas member (this is a wonderful organization -- I'm a host and a traveler -- it's a great way to meet people around the world). While Servas hosts are supposed to provide at least one meal for their guests, I'm also going to look into dining at college dining halls. The train will cost about $110 to get there, and I hope to go for about three days. I'd love to keep my spending under $200 total, so I'll track all my expenses and see how I do.
Day trips -- I LOVE house museums. So I'm going to find those that are nearby and see if they have any discounted admission days, or if they have reciprocal memberships or educator discounts. I'll plan my trips around those days and bring a nice bagged lunch and book with me and find a public park nearby to have a nice al fresco picnic as part of my outing.
Visiting friends -- I have some friends in NYC and some with rural or water-based summer homes (it's nice to have rich pals!); staying with friends is always nice, and instead of offering to take everyone out to dinner ($$$$), I'll offer to make a meal at home for the folks I visit (I'll ask in advance). But I'll research an interesting (and inexpensive) nearby restaurant in advance, in case going out is the only option.
Professional development trip -- I'll be spending two weeks in Italy, thanks to the Italian ministry of education, which is heavily subsidizing a professional development trip for Italian teachers (like me!). The cost is very very low and includes three meals a day (and a room in a dorm), plus I can write off the cost as professional development.
Hosting -- I hope to have some international Servas guests come to my house. I'll make meals for them and show them around my little town. THis is almost like traveling without leaving home -- we'll get to learn a lot about each other.
I'm looking forward to a frugal summer of travel and think it will be a really fun "extra" to keep track of all my travel costs!